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The United States Shipping Board
was established as an emergency agency by the Shipping Act
The Merchant Marine Act of 1916 was passed by the US Congress in 1916 to create the US Shipping Board. The bill was sponsored by Representative Joshua W. Alexander of Missouri, who was Chairman of the House Merchant Marine Committee...
(39 Stat. 729), 7 September 1916. It was formally organized 30 January 1917. It was sometimes referred to as the War Shipping Board.
[http://www.gwpda.org/wwi-www/Hurley/bridgeTC.htm | The Bridge To France by Edward N. Hurley, Wartime Chairman of the U. S. Shipping Board]
The Shipping Board's functions were to:
- commercial maritime carriers and trade practices,
- marine insurance,
- transfers of ship registry, and
- the rates charged in interstate waterborne commerce.
- Investigate adequacy of port and water transportation facilities,
- Determine the necessity for steamship lines and the characteristics of vessels on those lines,
- Develop a naval auxiliary and merchant marine, and
- Subsidize private ship construction.
The Board was abolished, effective 2 March 1934.
Its successor agencies have been the U.S. Shipping Board Bureau of the U.S. Department of Commerce (1933–36); the U.S. Maritime Commission (1936–50); the U.S. Federal Maritime Board of the Department of Commerce (regulatory functions only, 1950–61); the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission (regulatory functions only, 1961- ); the United States Maritime Administration of the Department of Commerce (all other functions, 1950–81); and the U.S. Maritime Administration of the U.S. Department of Transportation (all other functions, 1981- ).